- Recalling Article 23 of the Convention as well as Chapter I.4 of the Operational Directives relating to the eligibility and criteria of International Assistance requests,
- Having examined Document ITH/17/12.COM 4.BUR/5 as well as preparatory assistance request No. 01418, submitted by Namibia,
- Takes note that Namibia has requested International Assistance in the amount of US$10,000 to prepare for the nomination of Aixan (gâna/ōb ǂans tsî//khasigu), ancestral musical sound knowledge and skills to the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding. Aixan /gâna/ōb ǂans tsî //khasigu ancestral music is performed by the Nama and Damara communities, who mainly reside in Hardap, Karas, Erongo, Kunene and Otjozondjupa, situated in the northern and southern regions of Namibia. The music is practised as a means of entertainment at social events, such as during the dance to welcome the rainy season and wedding ceremonies, and also as a medium of instruction in girl’s education during their initiation into womanhood. The Namibia National Commission for UNESCO is responsible for preparing the nomination file in close collaboration with the Directorate of Heritage and Culture Programmes within the Ministry of Education, Arts and Culture. Technical support from a professional videographer and an expert is also foreseen;
- Decides that, from the information provided in file No.01418, the request responds as follows to the criteria for granting International Assistance set out in Paragraphs 10 and 12 of the Operational Directives:
Criterion A.1: The communities concerned were consulted during the preparation of the request and have provided their consent to the nomination of the element to the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding. An ongoing consultation process with the communities will take place through existing structures such as regional councils, traditional authorities, local development committees, community meetings and civil society organizations. The State Party also intends to ensure the direct engagement of community members in the documentation of the ancestral musical practice.
Criterion A.2: Despite a minor discrepancy in the estimation relative to the ‘communication cost’, the amount requested by the State Party seems appropriate in relation to the activities proposed for the preparation of the nomination to the Urgent Safeguarding List.
Criterion A.3: Although more detailed information on the proposed activities would have been helpful to have a better understanding of the implementation process foreseen by the State Party, the activities are concise and feasible given the timeframe proposed for the activities.
Criterion A.4: By this request, the State Party commits to submitting a nomination for possible inscription on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding in 2020. The direct involvement of community members in the fieldwork is expected to raise their capacity to safeguard living heritage and should therefore contribute to short- and medium-term results.
Criterion A.5: The State Party proposes sharing 33 per cent of the costs of the activities for which preparatory assistance is requested.
Criterion A.6: As the community members will be fully involved in the inventorying and documentation process, their capacities will consequently be reinforced. In addition, the State Party is committed to strengthening the capacity of the Directorate of Heritage and Culture Programmes to safeguard intangible cultural heritage through a coordinated effort with other institutions at the national level such as the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare.
Criterion A.7: Namibia has not previously benefited from International Assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund.
- Approves the preparatory assistance request from Namibia for the project entitled Aixan (gâna/ōb ǂans tsî//khasigu), ancestral musical sound knowledge and skills and grants an amount of US$10,000 to the State Party to this end;
- Requests that the Secretariat reach an agreement with the State Party on the technical details of the preparatory assistance, including a revised timetable and detailed budget;
- Invites the State Party to use Form ICH-05-Report when reporting on the use of the assistance provided.